History of Thucydides1. Life:~460-399 B.C.a. Wealthy, noble family; great grandfather general at Marathon, grandfathers opposed Pericles but Thucydides admired himb. Well educated - Sophists.c. Conservative - contemptuous of lower classes & democracyd. Political Failure - Exiled from Athens by Cleon for loss of Amphipolis 424 B.C.e. Bystander yet eyewitness as Athens lost war, end of Golden Agef. Spent entire exile writing History. Why?2. Historya. What it isn't - recitation of names dates and factsb. What it is - attempt to explain why events occur, interpretationc. Based on the assumption that human nature is constantd. If so, people behave in similar ways in similar circumstancese. This only works if historians "get their facts straight"3. Sophists, Skepticism, Humanism, Relativism, and Rationalisma. Intellectual Revolution among elite after 450 B.C. b. Sophists - first paid teachers of higher education, rhetoric - how to get ahead in societyc. Relativism - no absolute knowledge, beings, or values."Different strokes for different folks." "When in
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